(1st & 3rd photos from King County Assessor’s Office; 2nd, from Seattle Municipal Archives)
Did you know the site of Beni Hoshi (formerly Yasuko’s) Teriyaki, at the 35th/Fauntleroy entrance to the West Seattle Bridge, is a Seattle City Light-owned site that once housed this substation?
We didn’t, until a bit of research prompted by an online update from City Council President Richard Conlin, revealing that the city is eyeing this spot for possible development. He wrote, in part:
… the City is undertaking a pilot project to identify locations where city-owned properties and buildings would be suitable for joint development agreements. Such joint development could include leveraging multiple city funding sources to achieve community benefits, developing mixed-use urban infill on public parking lots, and identifying public/private development opportunities on public land. This could provide revenue for the City, but, more importantly, better utilize scarce resources of land and buildings, especially in denser urban neighborhoods where infill can be a major asset.
In his update (read it here in its entirety), he goes on to say that as part of the “Sustainable Community Development Pilot Program,” the city will “begin analyzing the feasibility of developments on five pilot sites” around the city. The list in his post included a “West Seattle Substation on Avalon Way.” We couldn’t find any records of a substation, past or present, on Avalon Way, so we asked Councilmember Conlin and his staff for location clarification. His staff is out but he replied – and pointed us to the Beni Hoshi site, which was known as the “Avalon Substation” with a long-ago address on SW Genesee:
County records reveal that City Light actually owns three parcels there, totaling about 17,000 square feet; the Beni Hoshi site is zoned for 65-foot mixed-use development, while two parcels to the east are zoned single-family. While this abuts The Triangle, it is not part of the rezoning the council just approved.
So what kind of possible development might be considered there? No specific proposals at this stage, but Councilmember Conlin’s writeup mentioned past examples of “joint developments” including the Delridge Library/Brandon Court site that includes a city-run Neighborhood Service Center, somewhat ironic since the new city budget is moving the NSC out of there and over to the about-to-be-former Southwest Community Center, and the Delridge NSC space is up for lease, as is the suite of offices formerly occupied in that building by the city’s partner in the project, Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association. Meantime, we’ll keep an eye on this study in the New Year.